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Sandown Park

  • 16:20 bet365 Gordon Richards Stakes 1m 2f 7y

  • (Group 3) £50,000 added 4yo+ 6 ran
  • Winner £28,385 2nd £10,760 3rd £5,385 4th £2,685
  • Going: Good, Good to Firm in places
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 2m 8.01s
  • Off time: 16:20:38

Full result

16:20 Sandown Park Result 23rd April 2011
Pos Draw Dist Horse Weight Jockey Trainer Age SP
1st (5) Kings Gambit (SAF) 9-0 J P Spencer T P Tate 7 5/1
Led, set strong pace and over 6 lengths clear halfway, came wide straight and reduced lead over 3f out, strongly pressed from 2f out, driven and edged right briefly final 100 yards, held on gamely, all out opened 9/2 touched 5/1 £1500-£300
2nd (4) s.h Black Spirit (USA) 9-0 L Morris C G Cox 4 16/1
Close up in 5th, tracked leading trio 7f out, headway on outside 3f out, chased winner approaching 2f out, soon edged briefly right, strong challenge inside final furlong, closed on wiiner close home, just failed opened 12/1 touched 16/1
3rd (2) Shamali 9-0 E Ahern W J Haggas 6 7/1
Chased winner, closed 3f out, lost 2nd approaching 2f out, one pace and dropped to 4th inside final 2f, rallied to 3rd again final 100 yards, no impression on leading duo opened 7/1 touched 15/2
4th (1) Nouriya 8-11 R L Moore Sir Michael Stoute 4 9/2
Tracked leading trio until settled 5th 7f out, not clear run briefly and switched to rails 3f out, chased leading pair inside final 2f, one pace and held when hampered and lost 3rd final 100 yards, eased soon after opened 11/2 touched 11/2
5th (3) Viscount Nelson (USA) 9-0 C O'Donoghue A P O'Brien 4 15/8f
Chased leading pair, pushed along 4f out, ridden 3f out, one pace when not much room and bumped 2f out, weakened final furlong opened 11/4 touched 11/4 £1100-£400 £10000-£4000 £2500-£1000 £750-£300 £900-£400
6th (6) Afsare 9-0 K Fallon L M Cumani 4 10/3
Held up last, headway on wide outside 3f out, chased leaders approaching 2f out, ridden inside final 2f, weakened over 1f out opened 5/2 touched 10/3 £1100-£400(x2)

Betting breakdown

Tote Win: £5.90 Tote Place: £2.70,4.70
Straight Forecast: £68.32 Exacta: £45.20 Swingers: 1&2:5.70 2&3:7.70 1&3:4.90

Jackpot: £10,069.89 carried forward to Sandown Park, 24th Apr
Placepot: £4,388.40, Pool: £148185.88, 24.65 winning tickets
Quadpot: £42.90, Pool: £12989.24, 223.6 winning tickets

Verdict

A fine ride from Jamie Spencer and a game and willing partner in KINGS GAMBIT saw the pair repel all challengers to gain just his second success since 2008 when he was trained in South Africa. He was drawn five of the six runners but Spencer was keen to grab the lead and rousted the seven year old to the front. He was tracked by Shamali for the first half mile but Eddie Ahern allowed his mount to drift back to the chasing pack as Kings Gambit led by around half a dozen lengths turning into the straight. Spencer started to get serious with over two furlongs to run and it looked as though Kings Gambit would be swamped as the field fanned out across the track to challenge but he kept sticking his neck out and held on well despite drifting across the already beaten Nouriya in the closing stages. Black Spirit won a valuable course handicap over a mile last summer before having four runs in France over this trip. He travelled strongly and looked the likeliest winner but just couldn't get past Kings Gambit; he was wearing a tongue tie for the first time here and may have a little bit more to offer this season and should find a race at this level whilst this track clearly suits him well. Shamali hasn't had a lot of racing for a six year old and was stepping up to this level for the first time having won a Listed race on his reappearance; he had every chance and wasn't good enough on the day but should continue to pay his way. Nouriya launched her challenge on the inside of the track and appeared to have drawn alongside the winner at one stage but her run petered out and she was held when slightly short of room in the closing stages. This was her first run over a mile since debut and this rates a more than satisfactory return; better can be expected when she's stepped back up in trip with this run behind her and she holds an entry for the Middleton Stakes at York next month. The two disappointments of the race were market leaders Visount Nelson and Afsare. Viscount Nelson had last been seen finishing third in the Eclipse over course and distance but he was one of the first under pressure turning into the straight and this has to go down as a modest run but it would be no surprise to see him leave this form behind as the season progresses. There are also pertinent excuses for Afsare who was on his toes at the start, weak in the market and too keen in the early stages of the race. He ran as though the run was needed and whilst his Group One entries in the Queen Anne and Irish Champion Stakes look to be flying a little high at this stage he is not one to give up on with his defeat of Wigmore Hall last June on just his third start looking particularly strong form given the runner-up's subsequent performances.